Stephen Weiss

Stephen Weiss

Stephen Weiss can be the voice of sanity on the news desk, but has not yet decided if he wants to be. He is a fan of skiing and Game of Thrones, and dreams of the day he’ll slide down a black diamond with literal swords strapped to his feet. He is a Gryffindor, and is the only one brave enough to order food for the entire office through the phone. He can be reached at

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In order to combat the opioid epidemic, New Jersey law enforcement is training officers to use Narcan, a drug that is typically administered to offset the depressive effects of Heroin. This year New Brunswick police administered 95 doses of Narcan.

New Brunswick police have administered 95 doses of Narcan to date this year

The number of heroin-related deaths in New Jersey is more than three times the national average, according to In response to this on-going crisis, experts and law enforcement are looking for creative ways to address the issue and help improve the conditions of the opioid epidemic in the state. Police who encounter a person under the influence of opiates often administer an injection of Narcan — a chemical that reverses the depressive effects of opioids — and then let the person go. But last year the Rutgers Center for Alcohol Studies began working with Frank Greenagel, an expert in heroin and opioid addiction, to train police officers on how to properly and effectively engage with a person suspected to be under the influence of these drugs. Captain JT Miller of the New Brunswick Police Department said that they have seen an increase in Narcan deployments by officers this past year with 95 doses administered this year to date, but sometimes a single overdose situation requires multiple doses of Narcan to be beneficial. There are many formulations of Narcan, which is a trade name of the drug Naloxone.

The purpose of the Scarlet and Black initiative is to shine a light on parts of the University’s history that are often overlooked. Today’s ceremony at the Sojourner Truth Apartments recognized the official renaming of three Rutgers landmarks.

Rutgers initiates next phase of Scarlet and Black project with dedication ceremony

Today, Rutgers took another step forward in the Scarlet and Black Project by officially dedicating three campus landmarks to Black historical figures who are often overlooked in the University's history.  The facilities being dedicated are the James Dickson Carr Library, Sojourner Truth Apartments and Will’s Way, said University spokesperson Neal Buccino in an email. The dedication ceremony kicked off at 11 a.m.

Paul Rando, a Rutgers graduate decided to coordinate with the non-profit Trade-ing Up to create a school in Yeji, Ghana where students can learn important vocational skills. Rando is working to raise awareness of the project while encouraging donations for the Sponsor-a-Student program.

Rutgers alumnus establishes non-profit vocational school in Ghana

A Rutgers alumnus is working with his team to better the lives of people abroad. Paul Rando graduated Rutgers in 2015 and has since joined Kyle Wiese and Brandon McGee, the founders of the nonprofit Trade-ing Up, to create a vocational school in Yeji, Ghana for students there to learn valuable trades affordably. Rando, McGee and Wiese met through disaster relief volunteering with All Hands Volunteers in Louisiana. McGee originally hatched the idea when he was working on starting a goat farm in Zambia and saw a need for increased vocational education. The first year of instruction for Trade-ing Up will begin in February of 2018 and will aim to provide holistic empowerment from the bottom up through vocational education and provide the certifications required to become an active member of the local workforce and economy, according to a press release. As fundraising manager for Trade-ing Up, Rando’s job is to spread the word about the organization and encourage people to donate in support of their Sponsor-a-Student program, which can put a Ghanaian student through their trade school for only about $368. These trade schools are particularly important because things like dressmaking and carpentry are of particularly high value in Ghana, Rando said. “Based on our calculations and (Brandon McGee and Kyle Wiese’s) experience in Ghana, we have figured out that it is $368 for a student there to complete their entire education, which was pretty mind-blowing because it is exuberantly more than that here in the States,” he said.

As part of national Free Speech Week, Rutgers held an event entitled "What is 'Hate Speech'? Definitions, Laws, Solutions." The event featured various speakers including Susan Keith, the Department of Journalism and Media Studies Chair.

Free Speech Week event at Rutgers explores the legality of hate speech

As part of Free Speech Week, the Department of Communication and the Department of Journalism and Media Studies hosted an event titled “What is ‘Hate Speech’? Definitions, Laws, Solutions.” The event featured talks by Department of Journalism and Media Studies Chair Susan Keith and professors David Greenberg and John Pavlik. Each professor discussed aspects of hate speech, such as what it is, where it comes from and its nature in American society, as well as how these things relate to free speech in general. “This is a conversation that is occurring all over the place, on campuses, on social media, in politics,” Greenberg said in an interview.

Jacquelyn Litt, the Dean of the Douglass Residential College invited international students into her home last Thursday to eat fresh-cooked food, socialize and learn about everything that Rutgers has to offer.

Rutgers Dean welcomes international students into her home for annual dinner

International students were welcomed into the home of the dean of the Douglass Residential College last Thursday to mingle, eat and learn about opportunities on campus. Dean Jacquelyn Litt has hosted the Dean’s Dinner for International Students annually in her house on the Douglass campus for about four years now. Rebecca Reynolds, assistant dean of Advising and Bunting Programs for the Douglass Residential College, organized the event. She said that they write to all of the international students each year and invite them to the dean’s house for a night of fun. “It’s a way to bring international students together because sometimes they don’t always meet each other on campus, you know, it’s harder for them to meet each other,” she said. The event is meant to create a sense of community between the international students at the University, and also to let them know about opportunities available to them and things happening on campus, Reynolds said. “(We) just to let them know that we’re here as a support system,” she said.

The Rutgers University Programming Association created the ‘Before I Die’ wall to encourage students to share experiences with one another and connect as a community. The wall will be making its way around the College Avenue, Cook and Livingston campuses.

The 'Before I Die' wall will be traveling around campus this week

Today through Thursday the Rutgers University Programming Association (RUPA) is hosting the annual "Before I Die" wall event. According to the website, "Before I Die" is a global participatory public art project that urges people to reimagine their relationship with death and with one another. The first "Before I Die" wall was created on the side of an abandoned house in New Orleans by artist Candy Chang after the death of someone she loved, according to the website.

A University spokesperson said the power outage resulted from a piece of equipment malfunctioning during installation. The outage affected multiple residence halls, the Busch Student Center and parts of the Davidson complex.

Power outage on Busch last week left students and residents in the dark

A portion of Busch campus’ power grid went out for about an hour on Wednesday, leaving the Campus Center and many of the surrounding residence halls without electricity. The power outage lasted from approximately 2:30 to 3:10 p.m., and was caused by the malfunctioning of equipment that facilities crews were installing, said Neal Buccino, the assistant director of Public and Media Relations at Rutgers. Affected areas included residence halls such as Judson, Crosby, Morrow, Thomas, McCormick and Winkler, in addition to the Davidson complex and parts of the Busch Campus Center, he said. No classes were canceled and no evacuations were necessary. Margy Benavides, an Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy sophomore, is a student worker at the Library of Science and Medicine (LSM) on Busch campus and was there during the outage. She said that the Library of Science and Medicine never lost power, but the lights flickered. “I heard from students coming in and from Facebook that part of Busch had lost power,” Benavides said.

A team of four current and former Rutgers student were awarded the Hult Prize for a project called Roshni Rides, which would provide accessible and inexpensive transportation for refugees in South Asia.

Rutgers team takes home Hult Prize and $1 million to make their idea a reality

Four forward-thinking Rutgers students won the $1 million Hult Prize award on Saturday for their idea to restore and improve quality of life for millions of refugees. The team, comprised of Rutgers Business School senior Najeeha Farooqi and three University alumni — Moneeb Mian, Hasan Usmani and Hanaa Lakhani — worked and planned for 11 months to become the first team from Rutgers to become a finalist in the competition. According to the website the 2017 Hult Prize challenge was to develop a business capable of restoring the dignity of 1 million refugees by 2022. Roshni Rides, the name of the winning business, is a transportation network solution that provides accessible, affordable and reliable public transportation for urbanized refugees living in informal settlements in South Asia, according to the Roshni Rides website .  According to the website, there are 200 million urbanized refugees in South Asia who do not have reasonable access to resources like markets, schools, hospitals and places of employment due to a lack of public transportation options.

Rutgers University's Transportation Master Plan, which will be implemented over the course of the next decade, includes plans for 9 new parking decks, various maintenance projects and streets with improved circulation.

Future of Rutgers transportation plan includes 9 new parking structures

The University’s Transportation Master Plan (TMP) work on College Avenue has been completed, but planning and construction of future transportation improvements will continue. Work right now is ongoing by the Richard Weeks Hall of Engineering building, which includes the construction of a new segment of campus roadway that is part of the proposed Busch Loop Road, said Assistant Director of Rutgers Public and Media Relations Neal Buccino.

Liam Burnell, the author of Take Courage America made a pit-stop on campus at Rutgers while journeying from Maine to California on foot.

While hiking from Maine to California, author makes pit stop at Rutgers

In a time when the nation seems to be at its most divided, one man is on a journey to extinguish social and political fears and promote unity. A little over a month ago, Liam Burnell, the author of Take Courage America, embarked on foot from Maine down the East Coast, aiming to meet and talk to as many people from as many different backgrounds as possible to promote his book.

Currently, Rutgers follows state and federal guidelines for maternity and family leave. The American Association of University Professors (AAUP-AFT) at Rutgers is working to expand options for faculty members in small departments. 

Rutgers faculty union works to negotiate more extensive family leave for employees

The American Association of University Professors-American Federation of Teachers (AAUP-AFT) is working to negotiate a revised contract with the University regarding family leave and disability resulting from pregnancy. Dory Devlin, director of University News and Media Relations at Rutgers, said that the University follows state and federal law as it relates to maternity and family leave. The Family and Medical Leave Act, which Rutgers abides by, provides up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave for qualifying employees, according to the United States Department of Labor. BJ Walker, a senior staff representative for the AAUP-AFT, is a strong proponent of the act. “(The Family and Medical Leave Act) is terrific to have because it preserves someone’s job ... It offers a real layer of protection for employees, that they won’t get fired because of illness,” she said. Even with the advantages of existing policies at Rutgers, the AAUP-AFT desires to improve benefits for its employees. Currently, the organization provides six weeks of paid recuperative leave, followed by an additional eight weeks of paid leave for birth mothers belonging to it.

The 20 percent jump in homelessness may partially be due to an adjustment in how the Point In Time (PIT) report is calculated.

Report shows 20 percent increase in homelessness in Middlesex County

As of Jan. 24, a total of 546 people from 373 households were considered to be homeless in Middlesex County, according to the 2017 Point in Time (PIT) Count Report. These numbers represent an increase of almost 20 percent in known sheltered and unsheltered homeless people in the county since the last year.  The count is carried out by Monarch Housing Associates, a nonprofit that aims to end homelessness by expanding the supply, accessibility and variety of affordable, permanent supportive housing through development, planning, advocacy and partnerships, according to their mission statement. According to the 2017 report, the count provides a statewide snapshot of homeless households in the community and reveals important demographic and other information regarding the families and individuals in question by way of the survey. Middlesex County officials told The Daily Targum that the number of homeless people appears to have risen since 2016 as a result of an increasingly refined counting process.

The Gloria Steinem Endowed Chair in Media, Culture and Feminist Studies was a joint effort between the Institute for Women's Leadership, the School of Communication and Information and the Department of Women's and Gender Studies.

Rutgers establishes Gloria Steinem Chair in Media, Culture and Feminist Studies

The Gloria Steinem Endowed Chair in Media, Culture and Feminist Studies is the newest addition to the Rutgers Board of Governors. Funded by more than 425 donors, the chair aims to challenge students in debate and scholarship focusing on new media, social change and power structures, according to a Rutgers press release.  Rutgers’ Institute for Women’s Leadership in conjunction with the School of Communication and Information and the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies will lead in brainstorming for this chair. Gloria Steinem, who the chair is named for, is a world-renowned feminist, journalist and social and political activist.

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The Vice Chancellor for Undergraduate Academic Affairs (UAA) spoke about his current projects at Rutgers University Student Assembly's (RUSA) Town Hall meeting on Tuesday night.

The Vice Chancellor for Undergraduate Academic Affairs (UAA) spoke about his current projects at Rutgers University Student Assembly's (RUSA) Town Hall meeting on Tuesday night.

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